BACI’s 2020 Lenten Bible Study “Caring for the Garden of the Earth”, was launched by our patron, Archbishop Michael Jackson, in Church House, Dublin on Tuesday 21st January.
Written by scripture scholar Dr Margaret Daly-Denton as her greatly appreciated gift to BACI, the resource comes in five parts, to facilitate creation-centered Bible Study in the first five weeks of Lent.
Launching the study, the archbishop noted that the writer had drawn on the expertise displayed in her “John: An Earth Bible Commentary” (T&T Clark, 2017) which explores the creation-centered scripture passages that would have been familiar to Jesus and the Johannine community, to highlight the biblical insights behind the Anglican Communion’s Fifth Mark of Mission that centres on Care for Creation. The series also makes the connection between the gardens of Gethsemane and Paradise, he added.
Referring to Dr Daly-Denton’s citation of Amos 8:5, “When will the Sabbath be ended that we may market wheat?”, Dr Jackson remarked that this quote went to the heart of consumerism and the impatience of the free market economy, as well as the monetisation of the earth’s resources.
“People who use this resource will be greatly enriched by it,” he stated. “One of the delightful things that Margaret does is to turn scripture into prayers and we can all try this approach too. A lot of work has gone into these studies, which invite a thoughtful response; and those who engage with them will get a great deal out of them.”
BACI chairman, the Revd Dr William Olhausen, said that the study exposed the layers of Jewish and Christian wisdom which Dr Daly-Denton draws on to broaden out the readers’ understanding of who Jesus was. He added that while the series picks up the Fifth Mark of Mission it also draws readers back to the first – to proclaim the good news of the Kingdom.
He thanked the editor of the Bible Studies, Canon Dr Ginnie Kennerley, for her excellent work on presenting the series in a way that makes them ‘user-friendly’ for parishes.
The “Caring for the Garden of the Earth” booklets can be purchased at €3.00 or £2.50 (plus postage) from BACI treasurer Barbara Bergin at firstname.lastname@example.org (56 Avondale Court, Blackrock. Co Dublin) and some copies are also available for purchase at Church House in Dublin and in Belfast at The Book Well, email@example.com, (27 Belmont Rd, Belfast BT4 2AA).
The booklets are also available for download below.